None for the Road: Will the Drink-Drive Limit Reduce Further?

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None for the Road: Will the Drink-Drive Limit Reduce Further?

Doctors are calling for the drink-drive limit to be reduced to the equivalent of just one small glass of wine or beer. The British Medical Foundation and trade union for doctors have confirmed that they will lobby the next government to change the limit.

The drink-drive limit in England, Wales and Northen Ireland is the highest in Europe – 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood. Scotland reduced their legal drink drive limit back in 2014 and this proposed change will bring the two laws inline. Some European countries (Slovakia, Hungary and the Czech Republic) have a zero policy on drinking and driving.

The new report calls for the legal blood alcohol content limit to be cut to 50mg/100ml (0.05%) and cut further to 20mg/100ml (0.02%) for commercial drivers and new drivers.

Drink drivers reaching the current limit are six times more likely to be killed in a collision. Road traffic accidents caused by driving under the influence continue to claim hundreds of lives each year. Road Accident charity, Brake, estimate that over 200 people die in drink-driving incidents on UK roads with a further 1,500 people being seriously injured each year.

There are numerous charities, groups and road safety organisations behind the proposals, so watch this space to see if changes are implemented.

Penalties for Drink Driving

There are numerous potential penalties for being caught drink driving, the severity will depend on the circumstances, the amount of alcohol in your system and if you have any previous convictions.

Punishments for being behind the wheel over the legal limit include:

  • Suspension of your driving licence
  • A driving ban
  • Unlimited fines
  • Imprisonment

Our drink drive calculator will help you to get an idea of the sentence you could expect.

Aggravating factors that may impact your sentence could include having previous convictions relating to alcohol or motoring offences, if you were involved in an accident, if you were driving recklessly or had passengers in your vehicle.

Some mitigating factors that could see a reduced penalty could include having a clean record, being in a genuine emergency situation, having medical conditions or learning disabilities or being the sole carer for a dependent relative.

Caught Drink Driving

If you have been caught drink driving or have mistakenly been accused of drink driving, it is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible. This will help you to understand the consequences and navigate the process with more confidence.

Our Solicitors are experienced in motoring offences and criminal defence. You can trust Bell Lamb & Joynson to provide the advice and representation you need during a worrying and stressful time. We do our utmost to keep you on the road if possible and will endeavour to reduce penalties to stop drink driving charges putting the brakes on your life.

Speak to us today for assistance. Call us on 03444 124 348, complete our website contact form or speak to our chat assistant, who is a real person, not a robot.

Driving Safely This Summer

With numerous sporting fixtures and lovely events taking place across the summer it can be tempting to get behind the wheel when you have had one too many.

Pubs are expected to be busy with daytime and early evening drinkers enjoying the Euro 2024 fixtures throughout June and into July. The coming weeks are likely to be full of summer weddings, parties, BBQs, festivals and impromptu day drinks. So, we urge you to be mindful.

Plan ahead – discuss designated drivers or book taxis before of leaving home. Make use of public transport, drink plenty of water if you are indulging in one or two small drinks and if in any shadow of doubt, leave your car behind.


For advice on a drink driving accusation or conviction please contact our team today.

To calculate the likely penalty for a drink-driving incident, please use our drink driving penalty calculator or contact us.



Mike Leeman

Mike is the firms Managing Partner. Prior to that he was the head of the criminal department and has over 25 years experience as Specialist Criminal and Motoring Solicitor.  Mike attended Calday Grange Grammar school on the Wirral and then studied at Sheffield Hallam University followed by the University of Sheffield. Over the years, he has been involved in a number of high profile criminal cases that have had national coverage. He has been the firms managing Partner since 2019.

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